|Much of what is know about Cordyceps sinensis we owe to the research of Dr. Georges Halpern, a physician and professor emeritus with the University of Hong
Kong, and author of several books about Cordyceps. His interest and commitment have resulted in
making available to the Western world the many research
studies conducted by Chinese scientists published in
various Chinese scientific journals. These investigations with Cordyceps sinensis have been summarized in the following scientific articles:
J.S., Halpern, G.M., and Jones, K. (1998): The Scientific Rediscovery of an Ancient Chinese Herbal Medicine: Cordyceps sinensis. Part I. Journal of Alternative and complementary Medicine 4(3), pp 289-303.
J.S., Halpern, G.M., and Jones, K. (1998): The Scientific Rediscovery of a Precious Ancient Chinese Herbal Regimen: Cordyceps sinensis. Part II. Journal of Alternative and complementary Medicine 4(4), pp 429-457.
- Mizuno T. (1999): Medicinal effects and utilization of Cordyceps (Fr.) Link
(Ascomycetes) and Isaria Fr. (Mitosporic Fungi) Chinese Caterpillar Fungi, “Tochukaso” (Review). International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms 1 (3), pp 251-261.
Xiao Y., Huang
X.Z., Chen G.,Wang M.B., Zhu J.S., Cooper C.B.: Increased Aerobic Capacity in Healthy Elderly Humans given fermented Cordyceps Cs-4: a Placebo controlled Trial. Ann. Meeting American College of Sports Medicine, Seattle, WA, June 3-5, 1999.
Improves the Respiratory Function
Several scientific studies have demonstrated the benefits of Cordyceps sinensis
in alleviating the symptoms of several respiratory illnesses including chronic bronchitis and asthma (Reference 2, Chapter “Effects on the Respiratory System”, pages 429-432).
In a double blind, placebo controlled study with 30 elderly volunteers
Cordyceps significantly improved the maximum amount of oxygen
these people were able to assimilate (Reference 4).
Cordyceps Improves the Functioning of the Heart
Numerous studies have demonstrated the benefits of Cordyceps sinensis on heart rhythm disturbances, such as cardiac arrhythmias and chronic heart failure (Reference 2, Chapter “Effects on the Cardiovascular System”, pages 436 – 441).
Cordyceps Helps Maintain Cholesterol
Four excellent studies have demonstrated that Cordyceps sinensis helps to lower total cholesterol by 10 to
21% and triglycerides by 9 to 26%. At the same time it helps to increase HDL-cholesterol (“good cholesterol”) by 27 to 30% (Reference 1, Chapter “Effects on blood lipid metabolism and
arteriosclerosis”, pages 299 – 301).
Cordyceps Reduces Tumor Size in Cancer Patients
clinical studies have been conducted in
China and Japan with
cancer patients (References 1 and 2). The studies were
done with CSE (Cordyceps sinensis mycelium, identical to
the KALA Health Cordyceps), using a therapeutic dose of 6
grams per day (= 4 capsules twice daily). In one study
with 50 lung cancer patients administered CSE in
conjunction with chemotherapy, tumors reduced in size in
46% of patients. A study in cancer patients with various
types of tumors found CSE (6 g/day for over 2 months)
improved subjective symptoms in the majority of patients.
White blood cell counts were maintained and tumor size was
significantly reduced in about half of the patients.
Researchers in Japan reported that CSE enhances the
general reactivity of the immune system in individuals
with cancer. To discover this, they subcutaneously
injected mice with cancerous (lymphoma) cells and then
orally administered CSE. This lead to a reduction of
tumor size and prolongation of the host survival time.
CSE also improved the antibody responses.
Cordyceps Protects against Free Radical Damage
Several studies have shown that Cordyceps sinensis protects against the damages caused by free radicals, and as such has powerful antioxidant properties (Reference 1, Chapter “Äntisenescence and Oxygen-Free Radical Scavenging Activity”)
Cordyceps Reduces Fatigue
Several studies with animals have demonstrated that Cordyceps sinensis increases the cellular energy production and oxygen supply. A
double blind, placebo controlled investigation showed a
marked reduction in fatigue in elderly patients when they were given three grams of Cordyceps daily.
In another study, Cordyceps sinensis improved shortness of breath and
reduced fatigue in patients suffering from chronic heart failure (Reference 1, Chapter “Improvement of physical performance and quality of life”, pages 293 – 295).
Cordyceps Helps Discomforts from Tired Legs
Several studies have shown that Cordyceps sinensis improves the flow of blood in the body by relaxing the smooth muscles of the blood vessels allowing them to expand. Cordyceps also improves the functioning of the heart and lungs (see above). Cordyceps therefore prevents or reduces the contraction of blood vessels which interferes with the flow of blood vessels in the legs, the main cause of tired legs (Reference 2, Chapter “Effect on the Cardiovascular System”, pages 436 – 441).
Cordyceps Improves Stamina and Athletic
Several studies with animals have shown that Cordyceps sinensis increases the cellular energy production and oxygen uptake ( Reference 1, Chapter “Improvement of physical performance and quality of life”, pages 293 – 295).
A study with mice demonstrated their improve swimming capabilities after six weeks of Cordyceps supplementation compared with a control group (Reference 3, page 260).
Cordyceps Combats Sexual Dysfunction
Three separate Chinese double blind and placebo-controlled studies with over 200 men with “reduced libido and other sexual problems” showed remarkably similar results. On average, 64% of the Cordyceps-users reported significant improvement at the conclusion of the experimental period compared with 24% of the placebo group.
In another double blind, placebo controlled study conducted with 21 elderly women with similar complaints, 90% reported improvements of their condition following the use of Cordyceps, compared with none in the control group (Reference 1).